The fourth vice president and minister for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera, defended this Wednesday that the Government will ensure that if the Australian fund IFM enters Naturgy, it is “with all the guarantees” in order to ” avoid situations that are not convenient for the Spanish economy “.

In the fourth of the forums organized by EFE and the KPMG consultancy on European funds, Ribera recalled that the Spanish economy is already “highly internationalized” and has many industrial and energy sectors in which “the presence of non-Spanish capital is important “.

However, he insisted that it is important to understand what the rules of the game are when talking about one of the most significant companies in the Spanish energy sector, which also “plays a leading role in the gas market.”

As explained, Naturgy also has to carry out its own electrification and transformation process, in which IFM’s entry into its capital would be framed. On January 26, IFM launched a takeover bid for 22.69% of Naturgy for 5,060 million, aimed at institutional and minority investors, and stated that it did not want to displace the main shareholder of Naturgy, Criteria [la sociedad holding que gestiona el patrimonio empresarial de la Fundación Bancaria La Caixa], with 24.8% of the capital.

The CNMV has accepted the partial offer for processing, after the investor requested it from the supervisor on February 5, but the operation needs the approval of the Government, which according to El Confidencial publishes, is willing to give the green light after the Madrid elections on May 4, although it will include some protection clauses on certain businesses. While waiting to know the result of the takeover bid, the company has decided to postpone the presentation of its new strategic plan.

The energy company chaired by Francisco Reynés recorded a net profit of 383 million euros in the first quarter, which is almost double the result [+92,5%] that it registered in the same period last year, thanks to its agreement with ENI and Egypt to resolve the disputes that affected Unión Fenosa Gas (UFG) since 2012.

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